Mumbai, Feb. 10 (IANS) Tightening the screws on the MahaYuti regime in Maharashtra, the Opposition Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) on Saturday demanded the dismissal of Chief Minister Eknath Shinde’s government and imposition of President’s Rule in the state.
Former Chief Minister and Shiv Sena (UBT) President Uddhav Thackeray raised the issue during a media conference on Saturday, while the Congress and the Nationalist Congress Party (SP) also called on Governor Ramesh Bais on the same day and submitted a memorandum to this effect.
Highlighting a series of incidents, the MVA allies alleged that there is a collapse of law-and-order in the state. On Friday, Shiv Sena (UBT) MP Priyanka Chaturvedi had written to Union Home Minister Amit Shah, apprising him in detail on the same subject.
Raising concerns over the events leading to the killing of his party leader Abhishek V. Ghosalkar on February 8 during a Facebook Live interaction and other incidents of crime that rocked the state in the recent months, Thackeray said the MahaYuti government has failed miserably to govern Maharashtra effectively.
“This government must go… It should be dismissed forthwith. President’s Rule should be imposed (in Maharashtra) and fresh Assembly elections should be announced soon,” Thackeray said.
He also slammed Chief Minister Eknath Shinde and Deputy Chiuef Minister Devendra Fadnavis for their ‘failures’ on various counts, referring to photos of shady characters with Shinde, former Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari and even Amruta D. Fadnavis, the wife of Devendra Fadnavis, besides other leaders in the state.
Meanwhile, state Congress President Nana Patole, NCP National General Secretary Jitendra Awhad and others met Governor Bais on Saturday and discussed the ‘deteriorating’ law-and-order situation in Maharashtra.
“Maharashtra has always given direction to the country… The state has progressed immensely in social, political, educational and cultural fields, and even in terms of law-and-order it was considered an ideal state,” the delegation informed the Governor.
However, in recent times, efforts are being made to disrupt the social fabric, break the peaceful atmosphere, oppress people at gun-point and incite caste-religious tensions, all of which have resulted in huge problems for safeguarding the law, it said.
The delegation referred to the attacks on senior journalist Nikhil Wagle, activist-lawyer Asim Sarode and activist Vishwambhar Choudhary, besides women workers of the MVA allies in Pune on February 9.
Patole and Awhad urged the Governor to take a serious note of the situation of criminalisation of politics, as they recommend imposition of President’s Rule in the state with immediate effect.
The delegation also included ex-CM Prithviraj Chavan, Congress Working Presidents M. Arif Naseem Khan and Chandrakant Handore, Atul Londhe, Siddharth Hattiambire, Surendra Rajput and Sanjay Rathod, among others.
Uddhav Thackeray also referred to the unprecedented admission by Director General of Police (DGP) Rashmi Shukla on Friday that people’s faith in state police has ‘diminished’ and the police must win back the ‘trust and support’ of the masses.
Shukla, the state’s first woman DGP, said the police and the communities must rebuild bridges, adding that she would not tolerate any unjustified acts of violence, exploitation or misconduct by the police force.
Patole recalled his previous meeting with the Governor two months ago on the same issue, after which he (Governor) had instructed the state DGP to improve the situation.
“Now, we have a new DGP who herself has admitted that people’s confidence in the police force has reduced,” pointed out Patole, seeking the sacking of the Shinde regime.